Need A Cheap Electro Classical Guitar

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fatwarry
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Need A Cheap Electro Classical Guitar

Post by fatwarry » Fri Apr 08, 2016 12:46 pm

I've been asked to do a gig where I'll need amplification. It'll be too noisy to simply use a mic so I'm looking for an electro guitar. However, I don't do this sort of think often so I don't want to spend any more than I have to. Also It doesn't matter much what it sounds like unamplifed as I'd only ever use it plugged in or as a beater. Does anyone have any experience of any particular models?
"I'll let you be in my dream if I can be in yours" - Bob Dylan (1963)

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SeanWinkler
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Re: Need A Cheap Electro Classical Guitar

Post by SeanWinkler » Fri Apr 08, 2016 1:23 pm

Get the Kremona NG-1 pickup. It installs by slipping it under the strings at the tie block (see photos online to get a better idea), so you can install and remove without any mods to your guitar. For about $70, you can add amplification to your existing guitar, then take it off when you don't need it.
Remember Anthony Weller, please help. Contact myself or Aaron Green for details.

fatwarry
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Re: Need A Cheap Electro Classical Guitar

Post by fatwarry » Sat Apr 09, 2016 11:37 am

Thanks. I'm aware of the Kremona but have never seen it for sale in the UK. Also I've heard that it's easily breakable
"I'll let you be in my dream if I can be in yours" - Bob Dylan (1963)

uptempo

Re: Need A Cheap Electro Classical Guitar

Post by uptempo » Sat Apr 09, 2016 11:52 am

I have the Yamaha NCX 1200 R which is classical spec in regards to neck and not the crossover one. I tried a lot of electro classical guitars and this was by far the best to my ears. I run it through a Schertler UNICO and it is fabulous.

They are about £1000 new but you might find one used for the £600 - 700 mark - fantastic value for the money.

It's the pickups that make these guitars but the Yamaha I have is a totally well made impressive instrument that is made for work.

DanielIndo

Re: Need A Cheap Electro Classical Guitar

Post by DanielIndo » Sat Apr 09, 2016 12:40 pm

uptempo wrote:I have the Yamaha NCX 1200 R which is classical spec in regards to neck and not the crossover one. I tried a lot of electro classical guitars and this was by far the best to my ears. I run it through a Schertler UNICO and it is fabulous.

They are about £1000 new but you might find one used for the £600 - 700 mark - fantastic value for the money.

It's the pickups that make these guitars but the Yamaha I have is a totally well made impressive instrument that is made for work.
@uptempo is right. Yamaha makes excellent electroacoustic. Even under USD500, such as the CGX series 122 which is true classical with electric. NCX series beginning from NCX700 also very nice. NCX1200 must be much better. It has cutaway but does not affect the sound IMPO since I have NCX as well. NTX series are different from NCX since it is much like acoustic stainless steel but using nylon strings.Regards from Daniel. Indonesia.

uptempo

Re: Need A Cheap Electro Classical Guitar

Post by uptempo » Sat Apr 09, 2016 1:04 pm

I have had two of these NCX1200R. I sold the first one and the moment it went I regretted it. I bought another and have recently thought about selling it but if I did I would regret it again. LOL - the things we do do fund new guitars.

If you can find one buy it - and yes the NCX 700 is good as well. There is a shop in the UK called Classical Guitar Plus and they do a range of electro classical guitars. He sold me both Yamahas and was a pleasure to deal with.

http://www.classical-guitars-plus.co.uk/

Hope this helps.

Tstrembu
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Re: Need A Cheap Electro Classical Guitar

Post by Tstrembu » Sat Apr 09, 2016 1:47 pm

How cheap do you want to go? I'm not sure if these are available in the UK, however I picked up a used (but never played) Sierra Palisades SC140CE for $140 USD on that big auction site. It has a solid spruce top cutaway with a piezo pickup, Barcus Berry Breeze IV preamp, and both 1/4" and XLR outputs. This is my first nylon string guitar, and I'm currently searching for an upgrade. However, I plan to keep this guitar, as it is certainly nice enough to keep around as a beater.

There is a SC145CE (same guitar with solid cedar top) on the same auction site for $267 USD with padded gig bag. The seller states that they ship worldwide from the US, however I imagine that the cost of shipping to the UK might be a deal breaker.
Last edited by Tstrembu on Sun Apr 10, 2016 2:04 am, edited 1 time in total.

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SeanWinkler
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Re: Need A Cheap Electro Classical Guitar

Post by SeanWinkler » Sat Apr 09, 2016 2:35 pm

fatwarry wrote:Thanks. I'm aware of the Kremona but have never seen it for sale in the UK. Also I've heard that it's easily breakable
Strings By Mail carries them, and I'm pretty sure they ship to the UK. Not sure about breakable--I suppose if you're trying to bend it or install it without fully loosening the strings then it might break. Otherwise, I don't see how it would break under normal use. Your call--you asked for cheap, and this seems like a pretty inexpensive option compared to buying another guitar.
Remember Anthony Weller, please help. Contact myself or Aaron Green for details.

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sxedio
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Re: Need A Cheap Electro Classical Guitar

Post by sxedio » Sat Apr 09, 2016 8:17 pm

I got a yamaha CGX101A for playing with bands, it might be a bit too cheap for playing solo classical, but definitely look at the more advanced yamahas like the NCX range. Also look at buying a guitar with a not very advanced pickup and a separate processing pedal. The Fishman Aura pedals and the Zoom A3 claim to work well with nylon but there's a lot of other acoustic guitar aimed pedals that would probably work.
(Gr) (En) (very little Fr)

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Gorn
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Re: Need A Cheap Electro Classical Guitar

Post by Gorn » Sun Apr 10, 2016 8:26 am

I agree with sxedio: don't worry too much about the "electric" sound of a guitar, a pedal EQ or a processing unit will fix it.
The all-purpose ne plus ultra is L.R.Baggs' Venue D.I. pedal (or Para Acoustic D.I.), but it's anything else but cheap. Maybe a Harley Benton 7-band EQ-pedal (a Boss replica - available at the Th...-shop) will do as well.
I started my "nylon-jazz" career with a Manuel Rodríguez Caballero 10 cutaway "electric neck" which was really nice for around 330 Euros. The treatment was not the best, the pickup-volumes of the strings were different and the action was too high, but that could be fixed by a luthier easily. Another Caballero and an FF Cutaway model had the same volume imbalance, too.
MR also builds Caballero Cutaway models with pickups and 52 mm neck, so maybe you'll find an (already modified) used one for a good price?

dory
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Re: Need A Cheap Electro Classical Guitar

Post by dory » Tue Apr 12, 2016 1:40 pm

This is not exactly what you are looking for but may be an interesting solution that has two uses. One of the members of our guitar club uses a silent guitar, but plugged into an amp making it essentially an electric guitar, but with a classical neck, and a sound more similar to a classical than electric, if not identical to a real classical guitar. It sounds a bit different but actually quite nice. He does this only occasionally but audiences (that includes me) seem to like it. When not onstage he uses it as a silent guitar for practice. I think he has a Yamaha but am nit sure.
Dory

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Blondie
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Re: Need A Cheap Electro Classical Guitar

Post by Blondie » Tue Apr 12, 2016 2:33 pm

Don't buy a rubbish guitar (with a poor pickup), get a nice pick up for your guitar, eg AKG C411 - at 100 quid you'd have trouble getting a guitar for that price, and it will sound a *lot* better than a cheap undersaddle piezo.

I have the one that draws phantom power from my PA, easy to attach and take off, perfect for occasional use.

fatwarry
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Re: Need A Cheap Electro Classical Guitar

Post by fatwarry » Wed Apr 13, 2016 9:08 am

Thanks for the responses everyone.

I'm in a real quandary over this. On the one hand I'm sure I'd be disappointed if I opt for a cheap instrument with a basic pickup. Also I don't really want another guitar laying around cluttering the place up when I'll hardly use it. On the other hand I don't really want to spend big bucks getting a good pickup for my usual instrument, nor do I really want to use a decent instrumemt ata gig like this when it could easily get damaged. I think I may just back out of the gig
"I'll let you be in my dream if I can be in yours" - Bob Dylan (1963)

fatwarry
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Re: Need A Cheap Electro Classical Guitar

Post by fatwarry » Tue May 03, 2016 6:17 pm

Thought I'd update this in case it's of use to anybody else in future............................

I did manage to get hold of a Kremona pickup. Unfortunately I wasn't able to use it as I could see without even installing it that I wouldn't be able to shut my case without the lid pressing on the pickup and as it's so fragile I'm sure it would have broken.

Then I tried a Yamaha NTX900 in a local shop. At first it felt like a nice instrument. Very comfortable and easy to play. However, the longer I played it the more I grew to dislike it. It has a 14th fret join and a narrower fingerboard than is usual for a classical instrument - I think this is to make it more acceptable to steel string players. It is also thinner than normal. The end result was that it wasn't entirely satisfactory when played as an acoustic instrument as it lacked volume and dynamic capabilities. Also the neck was a bit of a compromise. Too narrow for a classical and too wide for a steel player. A compromise too far I guess. The shop didn't have anything from the NCX range for me to try but I expect that would have been more to my taste.

Anyway, I did the gig on a steel strung guitar with a soundhole pickup. I was surprised how well it suited renaissance pieces
"I'll let you be in my dream if I can be in yours" - Bob Dylan (1963)

Jake Brawler

Re: Need A Cheap Electro Classical Guitar

Post by Jake Brawler » Fri May 27, 2016 7:34 am

The Kremona pickup is very fragile and will break with normal use in a few months. I broken four so far. My current one I had wrapped with carbon fiber by a ski manufacturer. The plug socket is still flimsy so I use caution every time it is pluged in and unplugged. On their own they are very bright and quacky and hum. I covered the entire pickup with shrink wrap to dampen the quackiness I also installed a ground wire from the bass string portion to the plug where the sleeve contact is to dampen the hum. they have insufficient gain so a pre amp is required. I use an MXR 10 band graphic EQ so I can boost the gain and cut the mids. The 400hz formant gets louder the more you turn up creating an unplesant woofie feedback so the more stages of EQ you can put in the way the louder you can play cutting mids at each stage as you turn up. I go EQ- Preamp (Presonus tube), Mixer (Berringer802) into two powered 50 watt 10" 2way speakers (Teachtech Titan) for gigs of 100. For louder sound or to compete with drums in a band 1/3octive EQ is needed to additionally cut 250hz and 400hz -12db in addition to all the other mid cut you can chain. Other than that a solid body like Gibson Chet Atkins will get you into the mix. Hybrids are no good and anything with fret dots of any kind screw me up. I'm shopping for a dedicated electro acoustic my self and plan on testing some out when I do my next recording session.

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